PARIT BUNTAR, Aug 8 – – Prime Minister today announced an increase of the Padi Price Subsidy Scheme (SSHP) rate from RM360 to RM500 per metric tonne of padi production, effective tomorrow.
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim when announcing the good news said, with the increase, padi farmers in the country would receive at least RM1,700 per metric tonne of their padi production, giving them a better income.
“This is the biggest increase in history. The rate was increased when I was the finance minister a long time ago.
“Today, I did it again. I announced it today, tomorrow it will be increased,” he said at the launch of the state-level Sentuhan Agro MADANI Programme, here today.
Also present was Agriculture and Food Security Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu.
The Prime Minister said that the increase in the rate will involve an annual expenditure of RM1 billion.
To address the issue of grading and classification of rice grains, Anwar said discussions will be held with the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to deploy agricultural officers to private rice mills specifically to monitor the process and prevent manufacturers from doing it without adhering to the established standards.
Anwar, who is also Finance Minister, said the Ministry of Finance will consider increasing allocations for the implementation of the five-season padi cultivation within two years.
“The RM3 billion allocated for building waterways and related matters is not enough; we need to add more. We will try to do our best for the farmers,” he said.
At the same event, Anwar also announced total assistance of RM21.8 million benefiting 28,295 padi farmers and planters in Perak.
The assistance was presented to the Perak Farmers’ Organisation chairman Datuk Sham Mat Sahat and representatives of area farmers’ organisations.
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